Who: Me, Girlfriend What: Celebrating 3rd Anniversary early Where: Saratoga Springs When: Friday September 4 to Wednesday September 9 Why: Because I can't get enough of Disney! Friday September 4: We woke up really early to catch the first flight out of Philadelphia. Flight landed in Orlando as scheduled and we were all checked in at the Saratoga Springs Resort by 11:30 am. Our room was ready, too! We were upgraded from the Pop Century to a one-bedroom deluxe villa and it was really neat. There was a hot tub in the bathroom! My dad was traveling in Florida on business, so after wandering around the parking lot awhile, we found the boat to Downtown Disney and met him at Fulton's for lunch. After I exchanged some Disney jewelry where the stones fell out from a previous a trip, we headed back to the resort to get ready for the Halloween Party at MK. We also took a peek inside the new TRex restaurant and it looks really cool inside. It's on the list for DG of a place we need to eat at. First, was a stop at Guest Relations to try and track down our lost park hopper tickets. The CM was so nice and replaced them for us because he could see I was near tears. We went into MK by 5:30 and rode Pirates, TM, Splash right away. The Halloween Party was awesome! I met Cruella DeVil and Maleficent, in addition to costumed Minnie and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. I almost met Abu but they switched him out for Jasmine and Aladdin. Snow White and the villians did not sign because they are so popular. I was told by a CM that there were about 5,000 people in the park. The Villian's castle show was funny - Cruella was really into it, it was great! The fireworks were also amazing - DG's favorite part! We trick-or-treated and had our faces painted, too. Big kids having fun. The parade was really neat with a bloodhound sniffing around and scenes from the Haunted Mansion. There did seem to be a bit of a roadblock or something when the floats ended up stopping for about 10 minutes but other than that it seemed smooth. By the time the party ended, we were really tired after having been up since 5 am - it was a great Disney tired and we fell asleep as soon as our heads hit the pillow in the giant king-sized bed. Saturday: We ended up sleeping in a little before heading to breakfast at the Artist's Palette at the resort. They put us up in one of the best room locations on property - room 3507 - with easy walking distance to the pool, bus stop, and food court. Then we were off to MGM for the day! We had ADRs at the Sci-Fi drive in and the desert was the best part - DG had the Apple Cobbler and nearly melted into her plate. I had the shrimp pasta which was huge, and for desert, the caramel cheesecake. The atmosphere was also unique so I think we will come back again to eat here. We went on the Backlot Tour, TMM which had about a 40 minute wait and no Potato Head! By the time we were finished, it was pouring outside. Good thing I packed the ponchos! We headed to animation and met characters from Up and looked around the Art Gallery. We caught the new American Idol show and it was awesome! I'm not a faithful AI watcher (though I may be now with Ellen!) but the attraction really had you feeling like you were there. Jai McDowall from Scotland won - he was very, very good. Afterwards, we hopped over to Epcot to catch Illuminations. First, we stopped at the bathroom in the Odyssey building and I snapped a few shots to commemorate walking back into a time warp! We found a prime location for Illuminations in Moracco. We usually watch it from Mexico at the Cantina but this place let you see more and we really got a lot out of it. Sunday: We were up early to head to EPCOT. First ride was Soarin' and I noticed a lot of dust in the ceiling while waiting in line. DG thought I was crazy for noticing that, lol. In the Imagination gift shop, I told the CM they needed more Dreamfinder merchandise but she had no idea what I was talking about. There were many CMs "earning their ears." DG found a t-shirt with the Seagulls on it from Finding Nemo saying Mine, Mine, Mine but they didn't have her size. I will have to call the mail order for that one! We did the Disney Visa meet and greet with the characters before heading back to MGM for 3:30 ADRs at Brown Derby and Fantasmic. We had to get the Cobb Salad! DG had the pork chop and I had the 12 oz steak. Everything was yummy, but especially desert - I had the strawberry cheesecake with the strawberries marinated in gran marnier. Best Cheesecake of my life. DG had the double chocolate cake. We squeezed in a ride on TOT before the show - DG and I bought classy looking hats to wear and had compliments on them the rest of the trip. I was wearing Minnie Mouse ears intermittently though while DG had a Mickey Sorcerer's hat. I realized after someone asked us where we had gotten them, that they aren't sold anymore. Fantasmic was nice though not all the effects were working. In the Pocahontas scene with the canoes, there was only one torch lit. One. It wasn't even that windy. Monday: We spent Labor Day at AK for EMH until about 3 pm. We went to Rafiki's Planet Watch after having completed everything else, including Picnic in the Park. I liked the food - I had the chicken wrap - but with all the food they give you, and for it being the hottest park, to only give you a 12 oz bottle of water was just stupid. It should be full sized - no question. Especially, if it is a regular counter service, you get a larger drink. I was disappointed with that. All better later when I found a shirt with Pooh looking at an elephant asking if that was Eeyore! After the park, we headed to DTD for some quick shopping for Christmas presents (I'm all done for this year ) and headed to ADRs to celebrate our anniversary at Chef Mickey's. Food was awesome! Characters were awesome! Atmosphere is awesome with the monorails! You could definitely sense the air a little heavier with the monorail CMs. I felt bad for them having lost a member of the team so recently. I did not see Monorails Pink and Purple. We saw Wishes right outside the MK that night before heading back to the resort. We had been trying to take this trip at a relaxed pace, but were still tired early - though our feet didn't hurt as bad! Tuesday: Up early for ADRs at Crystal Palace! This was an excellent buffet for breakfast and everyone was so nice. It was cool to see the MK almost empty in the morning before opening. It took us awhile to get there though - we got to the bus stop at 7:18 am for 8:05 reservations and didn't catch a MK (or any other breakfast bus for that matter) bus until 7:48 am! We encountered a few ladies of Main Street before hitting a few rides, grabbing a pineapple Dole Whip, and hopping to Epcot to play Kim Possible. Our mission was in Mexico and we had a blast pretending we were secret agents and saving the world. If we had more time, we would have completed more missions. On the boat ride to the Beach Club for ADRs at Cape May Cafe for dinner, the boat captain was feeding the ducks. He said he loves roast duck for dinner and on cue, they got off the boat. It was funny! Cape May Cafe was very nice for dinner and we met up with my dad again who had another Orlando business trip. The food was excellent - I could have eaten there all night but everyone else was getting tired. Wednesday: Our last day had come way to fast and we spent the morning at the pool playing on the waterslide. Just my speed! Next time we need to do a water park and more pool time. Headed to DTD to pick up last minute items and gifts to make us feel better for leaving before catching Magical Express to the airport. Overall, it was a great trip - excellent room, bad Disney transport, awesome food, a little too much running around, but engaging entertainment! Thanks for reading if you made it this far :sohappy: It's off to plan the next trip - maybe Wilderness Lodge!